Companies can call workers back to the office, but many want to stay home, especially those from underrepresented groups.
Black, Hispanic and female job seekers make up a larger share of applicants — and new hires — for roles that can be done remotely compared to their white and male counterparts, according to analysis released Thursday by LinkedIn. Between January 2019 and October 2022, the platform saw a 20% increase in the share of women applying for fully remote jobs, compared to a similar decrease in male applicants over the same period.
The analysis also revealed a notable increase in interest in this type of employment among Blacks and Hispanics. LinkedIn analyzed 1 million accounts belonging to each of men and women, as well as 300,000 accounts each for black and Latinx members who chose to share demographics about themselves.
Andrew McCaskill, a LinkedIn career expert, said application rates will only grow higher and higher as the number of remote jobs declines. Prior to March 2020, 2% of paid job postings in the United States on the platform were remote, he said. The number of remote job postings soared to 20% during the pandemic and has since stabilized at 15%. In the UK it’s 12%. Workers still want those jobs: 52% of candidates on LinkedIn are applying for remote positions.
“More and more people want remote work, but we have fewer and fewer remote jobs, and more and more companies are asking people not only not to have remote jobs, but to come back to the office,” McCaskill said. “This disconnect could become an issue as our businesses begin to ask ‘how do we attract this talent?'”
Black workers in particular were more likely to prefer remote work throughout the pandemic, according to surveys, with many saying it allowed them to escape some of the biases they faced in the office. Women with children also say it has helped them better balance the demands of work and family life.
There are career downsides to staying at home. Older bosses are more likely to want workers in the office, and the phenomenon of “proximity bias” persists, where simply being seen in the office can affect performance reviews, promotions, and job security. , according to a study. A recent survey found that remote workers are more likely to be considered lazy by their office colleagues. Women and workers of color, who already face an uphill battle at work, could be penalized for working remotely.
While remote work is just one facet of the overall company culture, McCaskill suggests it can be game-changing when it comes to hiring a diverse team. Remote jobs can also broaden the original pool of candidates. He pointed to the fact that 57% of the black population in the United States lives in the South and may not want to move away from established support systems and a certain quality of life.
“Remote work opens the door for someone in Jacksonville, Florida, or Nashville, Tennessee, or Hattiesburg, Mississippi to get a tech job without moving to Silicon Valley,” he said. -he declares. “As we begin to look at talent pools and opportunities for equity and inclusion, remote work needs to be a thought process as it relates to how talent will ultimately gravitate towards companies that prioritize flexibility. “